Organizer: Teacher rally will be ‘something Raleigh has never seen’

 — So far, 26 school districts across North Carolina have canceled classes next Wednesday as anywhere from 10,000 to 15,000 teachers plan to march to the Legislative Building then rally on Bicentennial Plaza.

According to the North Carolina Association of Educators, which is organizing the event, teachers will meet at the NCAE Headquarters at 10 a.m. and the march to the Legislative Building will begin at 10:30. The Rally for Respect on Bicentennial Plaza starts at 3:30 p.m.

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The rally’s organizers said teachers plan to meet with House and Senate members to push for additional education funding, including better pay, school safety improvements and repairs to crumbling buildings.

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The NCAE website had five specific goals listed:

“Significant investment in per-pupil spending so our students have the resources to be successful.

“A multi-year professional pay plan for educators, education support professionals, administrators and all other school personnel. This plan must include restoration of compensation for advanced degrees and longevity. The plan must also stop the flat-lining of experienced educator’s pay.

“Investing in the health and well-being of our students and making schools safer through increased school nurses, counselors, social workers and other support personnel and expansion of Medicaid to improve the health of our communities.

“Fix our crumbling schools and large class sizes with a Statewide School Construction Bond.

“Prioritize classrooms and not corporate board rooms.”

NCAE President Mark Jewell says more than a dozen buses will be coming to the state capital from across the state.6

“The response rate has been incredible,” he said. “This will be something Raleigh has never seen. It’s going to be gridlock.”


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